Although we start the year with strong intentions to become healthier, save money, and get organized, most often New Year’s resolutions are given up by January 17, nicknamed Ditch New Year’s Resolutions Day.
To ensure you stick with yours, choose a manageable goal, set a plan to meet and track it, then share it with your family and friends to help maintain your motivation.
To see your best, here are five resolutions to improve your eye health this year:
- Schedule your annual comprehensive eye exam. This routine visit gives you and your optometrist a chance to keep tabs on what’s happening in your body—your eye doctor can detect signs of serious health conditions, such as diabetes or high cholesterol, before the damage appears elsewhere in the body. Plus, most VSP members get an extra $40 to spend on Dragon and Liu Jo frame brands at select Premier Program locations through March 31, 2016. (Search for these frame brands on the vsp.com directory).
- Rethink your screen time. Nearly one-third of adults spend more than nine hours a day using a digital device, and one-fourth of kids use one more than three hours a day. Researchers are exploring the impact of the harmful blue light from these devices on our eyes; potential symptoms include eye strain, blurry vision, headaches, sleep deficiency and age-related macular degeneration. In addition to limiting your family’s screen time, see these six steps to relief from Computer Vision Syndrome.
- Revise your meal plan. Protect your vision with antioxidants and other nutrients that can help prevent cataracts, dry eye, and macular degeneration. Check out these eye-healthy recipes, and add these to your shopping list: dark, leafy greens, kiwi, grapes and eggs, which have lutein and zeaxanthin; fatty fish like salmon or tuna, as well as nuts and seeds for omega-3 fatty acids; green bell peppers, strawberries, broccoli or oranges for vitamin C; liver, carrots, sweet potatoes or spinach for vitamin A; almonds, fortified cereals, or peanut butter for vitamin E; and poultry, red meat, whole grains or baked beans for zinc.
- Learn your history. Remember those lovable individuals you just spent time with during the holidays? Call the ringleader (especially if it’s your grandmother, she adores being called), ask how she’s liking that new blender/sweater/book you gave her, then find out whether anyone in the family has been diagnosed with an eye disease or condition. Many can be hereditary, including glaucoma and macular degeneration, so it’s important to know if you’re at a higher risk.
- Quit smoking. You likely know that smoking and secondhand smoke harms your autoimmune and reproductive systems, heart, blood, bones and lungs; it also significantly affects your vision. Smoking can increase your risk for cataracts, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, macular degeneration and dry eye. Learn more.
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